Jim Booth addresses Royal Society’s Food, Farming and Countryside Commission

Jim Booth, SAOS’s Head of Co-op Development, addressed the Royal Society’s Food, Farming and Countryside Commission earlier this week, to convey the importance of co-ops and co-operation. He tells us:

“My presentation was to the RSA Food, Farming and Countryside Commission.  This is a two-year independent study involving 14 commissioners, chaired by Sir Ian Cheshire.  The meeting was one of a series of round table events taking place around the UK. These events are being used to identify priorities, issues to be tackled, and recommendations which will contribute towards the main Commission report. The final report is being sent to the UK Government and the devolved administrations, as well as other stakeholder groups and is expected in July 2019.

Click on the slide to see ‘The Co-op Advantage’ compared to companies:co op adv

The presentation was making the case for co-operation and supply chain collaboration to transform agriculture and the wider rural sector.  I argued that the UK is lagging behind the rest of the world in terms of productivity and competitiveness because co-operation is largely missing. I also argued the case for greater innovation which is best delivered through co-operation because co-ops have the leadership, management systems and capital to fast track it. However, I also stressed co-operation and supply chain collaboration can only happen if we have the right policy drivers behind them. It seemed to resonate with everyone present and make an impact so hopefully we are getting the message across!”

Find out more about the committee on the RSA web page: www.thersa.org/action-and-research/rsa-projects/public-services-and-communities-folder/food-farming-and-countryside-commission